Monday, May 28, 2018

My long lost cousin

I had not even thought about him for many years.

They called him "Little Charles."

He was my first cousin--the son of Charlie and Jess Timbs. (Charlie Timbs was my dad's brother).

Never met Little Charles.

Never had the chance because he went missing while serving in the U.S. Army in 1964.

Little Charles never came home.

All I ever heard about him while I was growing up was that he went out to sea on a ship, but when they called roll (or whatever they do in the Army), Little Charlie didn't answer.

They searched high and low.

No Little Charlie.

No body.

No trace of him. Not a clue as to his whereabouts.

So what happened?

No one knows.

I do know that his parents went to their graves without any answers.

Fast forward 54 long years to today--May 28, 2018.

I'm driving slowly through the Veterans Administration Cemetery at Mountain Home VA Medical Center in Johnson City, Tenn.

Just killing time, taking in the expanse of tombstones/markers--every single one of them decorated with a small American flag. Moseying around in my car waiting for an annual Memorial Day service to begin.

For some reason I stopped.

I looked out the driver's side window.

And there was a marker with the last name "Timbs" on it.

Of course, I stopped!

Why did I just happen to cast my eyes toward that particular marker--of the thousands of flag-decorated markers that grace that hallowed cemetery?

What happened all those years ago to my cousin Little Charlie?

Some questions will never be answered.

Uplifting scene at my favorite grocery store

You never know what you'll encounter when you go to the grocery store.

Especially my favorite grocery store in the whole world--the big Food City store on State of Franklin Road in Johnson City.

Sparkling, clean floors there.

Aisles and aisles of anything you'd want to eat. Everything neatly and attractively organized.

Customer friendly employees and a very capable store manager who knows how to run a top-notch grocery shopping mecca.

Hats off to the folks at this Food City store.

In the picture are two helpful Food City employees. With them are a woman and her dog.

Thanks, Food City folks, for helping this woman.

(I noticed when I entered the store a few days ago, that the woman with the dog got immediate assistance with her shopping).

Good folks--these Food City employees.